The culture of the Golden Arches |

The culture of the Golden Arches

Joshua ColpittsBreckenridge

I have recently read several letters in favor of opening a McDonald’s in Breckenridge. Proponents have argued that chains already exist in our town, such as Subway, Pizza Hut and City Market, so how can one more be harmful? That kind of logic, however, is similar to saying that we already have some litter on our streets, so why not just dump all of our garbage onto Main Street? McDonald’s is the quintessential example of plastic postmodernism. Consumers all around the world (including India, whose vegetarian menu claims that even the mayonnaise is egg free) can enjoy fast, cheap food with limited human interaction.I have seen McDonald’s defile some of the most beautiful plazas in Europe thanks to neoliberalism and globalization. In Toledo, Spain, once known as “the city of three cultures,” where Jews, Muslims and Christians lived together in harmony for centuries, in the Zocodover (the city’s main plaza), one would have to be blind not to notice the overbearing golden arches that adorn the square. Entire countries are losing their unique identities because of cultural homogenization. We cannot entirely blame McDonald’s for this horrific phenomenon, though one must not ignore its influence.Breckenridge, more than most towns, has at least attempted to preserve its cultural heritage by maintaining strict architectural standards and denying many chains access to its wealth, allowing small businesses to thrive and giving the town a unique atmosphere. We must not allow McDonald’s to invade our town and strip it of its identity. Sure, it’s only one restaurant, but we will have opened up the proverbial “can of worms,” allowing more chains to come in and deface our beautiful community with corporate logos and nonsense.Joshua ColpittsBreckenridge

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